Moodlemoot UK 2011 Keynote via Twitter

Report on the Gráinne Conole’s keynote at Moodlemoot 2011 based on the #mootuk11 twitter stream

Senate House (by @nrparmar)

I’m not physically at the UK Moodle conference this year.  There’s no live streaming (although the sessions are all being recorded), so I’ve been keeping an eye on the #mootuk11 Twitter stream to see what I can glean.

How well does Twitter capture a lecture?

I thought it might be interesting to write up the keynote based on my Twitter viewing.  It’s difficult to say how well this works; perhaps someone who was there will comment below.  I feel that I probably have a good idea of the broad topic but lack detail and the nuances of Gráinne’s thoughts.  Also, it’s not always clear when tweeters are giving their own view or reporting the speaker’s view.  I have lots of links because sharing links is a popular use of Twitter at live events.


I know Gráinne, we’ve met a couple of times and I follow her blog and we’re friends on Twitter.  I mention this because it means I come to her keynote with a certain understanding of her work and the things she is interested in.  I know about her Cloudworks project and I gave an Introduction to Cloudworks (6-mins, includes audio) talk once.

The keynote

The keynote started at 10:15 ish, I don’t know what the title was.

The first reference I picked was to Mike Wesch’s The Machine is Us/ing Us YouTube video. (Not sure if it was shown).

Students are digitally immersed (reference to JISC’s work in this area). Digital literacy is very important,learning needs rethinking in the digital age.

Content is king. Free online content from OU (e.g. iTunesU) is attracting students to take courses at OU.

Blended learning is the future.  There is a place for both informal learning communities (e.g. networks on Twitter) and for formal course and structures. We are all learners & teachers.  People can learn through the act of creating content.  New technologies & tools link to social constructive learning pedagogy. We co-evolve with technologies but new technologies are not being exploited well in organisations.

Open educational resources (OERs) are not being used yet. There are loads of good ones but we continue to develop our own. Barriers include lack of time (to find good quality resources), skills required & tension between teaching and research. (I took this to mean research has to take priority for most academics leaving less time for teaching and related tasks such as finding appropriate OERs). A bit about repositories.

Use of social media by academics (for research)  is increasing. The cloudworks project was explained. Twitter didn’t reciprocate so check my Introduction to Cloudworks 😉


I’m not sure what exactly what was asked but Twitter tells me I was name checked and I correctly guessed that this was in relation to my 2009 Is Twitter killing blogging? poll.  More about this in my ALT-C 2009 conference report: Blog Off


The following URLs & comments passed thru’ my Twitter stream:

Senate House photo from @nrparmar

Reader Comments

  1. Liked your idea for testing how well twitter captures a lecture. I also am not at this event, and because I’m unsure of the presentation timings, I’m getting a slightly “choppier” view of the moot. I can pick up some of the ideas the participants are expressing, and get a sense of presentation themes, but am missing the deeper information that could help adapt/adopt those ideas in my own context. Both invigorating and somewhat frustrating!

  2. Following Pelc11 I am new to twitter and enjoying it but there is an assumption that it is widely used and known for academia and upon returning to Dundee and sharing enthusiastically with colleagues it seems a ‘new phenomenon’ to many. Do you think this would be a similar reaction with a group of mature or distance learners?

    1. Hi Lynn!

      I don’t think Twitter is generally widely used in academia and I’m fairly certain that many (most) of your mature distance learners aren’t using it yet. But it would be a great tool to introduce them to. Even at events like #mootuk11 (full of edtech folk) I imagine less than half are tweeting. A staff survey here, showed 20% academics had tried it in last 6-months but I don’t know many who use it. I’m just about to meet with some staff here who tried it in teaching last term. Will blog about it at some point. Matt

  3. Hi Matt,

    Great post and great idea.

    I was at the Moodle Moot today…I was one of the people that got over-excited about hearing the name of someone I know in the keynote session..sorry! I’m also a bit of a twitter newbie and haven’t really found my feet with it yet. I’m aware I often tweet direct quotes from the presenter without making it obvious that that’s what I’m doing. I’m still unsure whether I’m tweeting as a way of making notes for myself, to interact with others who are in the same room or for the benefit of people who aren’t there. I’ve just been looking over my tweets for today and it’s helping me to write up my thoughts on the day.

    I think you got a pretty good sense of the keynote. As it was the first event of the day, I got the impression that twitter hadn’t really got going..I haven’t really looked at all the tweets but I just had an impression that there were more people tweeting later on.

    Very interested to hear how staff using it in teaching at LSE have got on.


  4. Interesting experiment. I’ve offered to live-tweet a conference next year on paleolimnology (not a community known for use of social media!) so I’m keen to see how this should be done most effectively.

  5. Matt – an impressive summary. I was not at Moodle Moot and I am not involved with educational technology but I am interested in the social capital generated through social learning. I agree with Lindy Klein that tweets from conferences can be both invigorating and somewhat frustrating!

    There are similar challenges in social services of persuading people about the benefits of social learning though social media. A fascinating example and you have inspired me to try something similar in the future!



  6. Matt
    I was at MoodleMoot this year and agree that, considering the number of people there, only a small percentage were tweeting. Those that were tended to be tweeting a lot. I think following a twitter stream at a conference gives you a dimension that you wouldn’t normally have. You can get information about sessions you haven’t gone to, discuss issues raised, follow new people. share links and make connections. I found that incredibly valuable at MoodleMoot.
    Twitter @ESTSASS

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